How similar is the iPad to the iPhone (newbie question)

PaulQ

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May 28, 2021
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I am a die-hard Android user, full respect for Apple devices though. I am hoping I can get some help. I figure a lot of people on here have an iPhone and an iPad Air.

I am frequently having to remotely help my parents with their iPhones and iPads. I don't want to switch to iPhone but I would like to get more familiar with iOS so I can help them more efficiently. Plus, I admit, it would be cool to broaden my device horizons.

How similar is an iPad Air to an iPhone in terms of the software? I know that obviously everything phone-specific isn't on the iPad. In your opinion though, would an iPad give me a good sense of the iPhone too?

Hope this isn't a stupid question. Thanks for your help!
 

Annie_M

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Initially, the iPad Operating System was iOS (which is the same operating system for iPhone). Then, in 2019, iPadOS was announced. According to this article on Wikipedia:

“iPadOS is a mobile operating system developed by Apple Inc. for its iPad line of tablet computers. It is a rebranded variant of iOS, the operating system used by Apple's iPhones, renamed to reflect the diverging features of the two product lines, particularly the iPad's multitasking capabilities and support for keyboard use. It was introduced as iPadOS 13 in 2019, reflecting its status as the successor to iOS 12 for the iPad, at the company's 2019 Worldwide Developers Conference.[10] iPadOS was released to the public on September 24, 2019. The current version is iPadOS 14.6, released on May 24, 2021.”
 
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Mars20

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Another helpful advantage if you get an iPhone is that you will be able to communicate with your parents via iMessage, Apple's proprietary text service which runs over the internet.
 

Annie_M

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And, iMessage also works on iPad. I have a friend who is hearing impaired and doesn’t use an iPhone. She does have an iPad. We frequently communicate via iMessage.
 

doogald

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Yes, they're very similar. The iPad just has a few more features.

And a few less. Well, mostly regarding widgets. You cannot put them wherever you want on a Home Screen, and they will only show on the main Home Screen on the first page if you turn on that option, but only together on the left side of the screen. But also no built-in calculator app.

But, essentially, it's pretty much the same.
 

EdwinG

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One big difference between iPhone and iPad are the apps.

Some apps will display significantly differently between devices (e.g.: Messages is multi-column on iPad, whereas it is a single-pane on iPhone).

But they are extremely similar devices under the hood of aesthetics.
 

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